WAFL Round 3 Wrap
Updated: May 5, 2021
Subiaco has remained undefeated in thrilling style, Greg Clark's late goal proving to be the match winner against West Perth at Arena Joondalup on Saturday.
Claremont's impressive start to the season continued as they also made it three wins from as many starts against Perth at Revo Fitness Stadium, East Fremantle kept East Perth winless with a 25 point triumph at East Fremantle Oval, Swans comfortably accounted for West Coast at Bassendean Oval while South Fremantle's trip to Pingelly in the upper great southern proved profitable as they defeated Peel Thunder by 18 points.
In what was the 91.3 Sport FM broadcast game, the Bulldogs controlled the contest for the most part at Pingelly Oval against a Peel outfit that included 11 Fremantle listed players, breaking clear in the second quarter after the lead changed hands four times in the opening stanza.
Without skipper Dylan Main (heel) who was a late withdrawal and premiership players Brock Higgins and Jason Maskos the Bulldogs next tier of stars stood up, Cody Ninyette electric up forward with two first half majors and setting up two more, Steven Edwards also a livewire inside forward 50.
Returning Fremantle listed ruckman Lloyd Meek was giving his side first use in the ruck against debutant Hamish Free, but South Fremantle had opened up a 26 point gap at the half and extended that to 38 by three quarter time, Haiden Schloithe with two third term majors to go with 14 disposals for the term.
The Thunder rallied in the last to close within 19 points before Schloithe steadied any South Fremantle nerves with his third goal, the reigning premiers with their second win of the season 14.11 (95) to 11.11 (77).
Schloithe finished with 33 disposals and 3 goals for the winners having had just one kick in the opening half, Ninyette with 3.2 and four goal assists while Edwards and stand in skipper Mason Shaw each contributed two goals.
Connor Blakely had 25 disposals for the Thunder, Ben Hancock (22) and Tyrone Thorne (21) also finding plenty of the ball, while Meek pressed his claims for an immediate Dockers recall with 13 disposals, 31 hitouts and 2 goals.
Subiaco overcame a sluggish start to win a thriller against West Perth at Arena Joondalup, winning by 3 points in what proved to be the game of the round.
The Falcons burst out to an early advantage thanks to a five goal to one opening term, in form key forward Tyler Keitel with two first term majors.
When he made it three early in the second term the Lions had a problem trailing by 29 points, only to rally thanks to a seven goal term to lead at half time, forwards Jordan Faraone and Ben Sokol causing headaches for the Falcons defence.
The teams traded goals in an arm wrestle of a contest in the third term, before Sokol broke free for two late majors for Subiaco that handed the visitors a 15 point lead at the final change.
The Falcons grabbed the lead and momentum back in the final term, goals to Rudy Riddoch and Keegan Knott putting the home side in front early in to time on.
Ryan Borchet struck back to bring the margin under a kick in the dying minutes, before Greg Clark became the hero for Subiaco with the match winning goal in the final minute, keeping his side undefeated and top of the ladder with the 14.10 (94) to 14.7 (91) result.
Faraone and Sokol eached kicked four goals for the Lions, while Keitel kicked four with able support from Knott (3) in a terrific contest.
Clark had 37 disposals to go with his match winning goal while skipper Leigh Kitchin had 32 touches and Harrison Marsh 27 to go with two goals as he settles in a new midfield role.
Connor West had 30 disposals to continue his progression as part of a strong Falcons on-ball brigade, Trent Manzone (28 disposals and 11 marks) and Shane Nelson (28) also finding plenty of the football.
Claremont's impressive season continued as they joined Subiaco on a 3-0 record with a 32 point win over Perth at Revo Fitness Stadium, never headed by a misfiring Demons outfit.
The Tigers also registered their third straight 100 plus score with the 16.14 (110) to 12.6 (78) result, a five goal to two first quarter opening up a gap between the sides that would never be closed.
Harrison McCracken (4 goals) and Alex Manuel (3) proved to be potent in attack, the Tigers with ten individual goalkickers in a fine display.
The Tigers midfield found plenty of the ball led by Jye Bolton (33 disposals) and Bailey Rogers (30), while Lachlan Martinis continued his fine display across half back to start the 2021 season with 30 touches of his own.
Matt Rogers booted three for the Demons but lacked support, a five goal to two last quarter papering over the cracks somewhat as Perth slumped to a second straight loss.
East Fremantle continued East Perth's miserable start to the season, comfortably accounting for the Royals by 25 points at East Fremantle Oval.
East Perth wasted their opportunities in the first quarter, kicking 1.6 while the Sharks made the most of theirs to kick two goals, pushing a two point lead out to 16 by half time.
The winless Royals were struggling for options in attack while East Fremantle had options popping up everywhere, Hugh Dixon with his first two goals in blue and white in the third term as the home side kicked eight goals to two to lead by 53 points with a quarter to play.
East Perth found some momentum in the last quarter with five unanswered goals, but couldn't get close enough to threaten the Sharks who ran out winners, 13.10 (88) to 9.9 (63).
Jonathon Marsh, Tim Bockman and Dixon all finished with two goals, ten East Fremantle players hitting the scoreboard with majors in their second win from three games.
Kyle Baskerville had 28 disposals to be among his side's best, Milan Murdock (27) and Cameron Eardley (26 and 14 marks) all having an impact.
Scott Jones bagged three for the Royals, who were without key midfield pair Jackson Ramsay and Nick Robertson, acting skipper Angus Scott with 27 disposals along with versatile utility Nathan Blee.
West Coast is also without a win through three rounds as they limped to a 39 point loss at the hands of Swan Districts at Bassendean Oval, the home side setting the tone with a four goal to nil opening term.
Swans were never headed in the contest with the ball played in their forward half, recording 58 inside 50's to 32 and 74 more disposals than their opponents, squandering their chances in front of goal with a return of 10.15 to three quarter time, the lead 59 points.
Matt Riggio was outstanding with 32 disposals, 15 marks and 9 inside 50's for the black and whites, in form forward Jesse Palmer with 4.4 from 19 disposals and 12 marks to take his goal tally to 11 goals in three games to start the season.
Thomas Edwards kicked 3 goals to play his part up forward, West Coast kicking six final quarter goals to gain some respectability back in another disappointing loss.
Brayden Ainsworth had 32 disposals as did Eagles skipper Hamish Brayshaw, Jermaine Jones with two goals having been unused as a medical substitute at AFL level on Friday night.
Subiaco and Claremont occupy the top two positions on the ladder after three rounds, Swan Districts, East and South Fremantle the right side of the win-loss ledger after three matches to be inside the top five.
West Perth, Peel Thunder and Perth are all 1-2, while West Coast and East Perth are yet to record a victory in season 2021.
Round four sees West Perth host East Fremantle, Swan Districts play South Fremantle, Subiaco face West Coast, Peel Thunder at home to Claremont and Perth playing East Perth under lights on Anzac Day at Lathlain Park.
IMAGE: WAFL Official.